Lynchburg Insulators

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CD 160

Lynchburg CD 160

No. 32 Double Petticoat Pony

CD 160, Small Telegraph and Telephone

Original Molds: Gayner

Number of molds known: 18*

Mold Types: 2

Major Lettering Arrangements: 1

Lettering Variations: 1

Crown Lettering: No

Retooled Molds: Yes

Base Types: CDP, RDP

Number made: 23,358

Original Price 1924: $40.00 per 1,000; 4 cents each

*there are 11 confirmed basic molds known, some of which were reworked

Colors: Lt. Blue Aqua, Lt. Aqua, Aqua, Lt. Green Aqua, Light Green, Aqua Jade with Milk Swirls

Note: There have been recent changes to the Type designations for this style.

The CD 160 was made from retooled Gayner molds that were further reworked by Lynchburg. This adaptation of Gayner molds results in two major variations of the Lynchburg CD 160, primarily differences in the shape of the crown and wire groove.

Lynchburg CD 160 Type I molds are reworked Gayner molds, with only the Gayner lettering removed and Lynchburg lettering added. Since there was no alteration of the profile of the insulator, these are identical in shape to Gayner CD 160. These have a narrow crown that is noticeably smaller than the skirt with more vertical sides, (sometimes called "pinched dome" or "skinny dome"). At least five molds of Lynchburg CD 160 Type I were produced, with two other molds reported but not confirmed. Since there were possibly 12 molds of the Gayner CD 160 there may be as many as 12 Lynchburg molds. However, it is also possible that not all of the molds were produced in Type I before modification to Type II.

Lynchburg CD 160 Type II molds are Type I molds that have been reworked to alter the shape of the crown. These have a slightly wider dome with more sloping sides coming to a wider lip on the upper wire groove, which creates a deeper wire groove than the original Gayner molds of Type I. This reworking gives them a heavier appearance inspiring the nickname "fat dome".

At least one mold, CD 160 II, Mold 10, was further reworked twice resulting in alteration of the crown profile, CD 160 Type II, Mold 10.1 and CD 160 Type II, Mold 10.2. It is uncertain why this mold was re-worked in such a manner. It is likely that the mold top was damaged in some way and the alterations were attempts to keep the mold in production. It is also possible that the alterations were a deliberate attempt to match the profile of its CD 160 to Hemingray's comparable style since Hemingray was the primary competition. It is also possible that damage to the mold provided the opportunity to rework the mold to more closely match the Hemingray version. Since this is a reworking of only one mold it is not given a different type designation.

Hemingray CD 160
Comparison of the four versions of Lynchburg CD 160, Mold 10:
Type I, Mold 10 (left); Type II, Mold 10 (left center); Type II Mold 10.1 ( center), Type II Mold 10.2 (right center). A Hemingray CD 160 No. 14 is included at far right for comparison. Four photos at left courtesy Andrew Gibson and Terry Drollinger

Origin of Type II molds. There has been some discussion among collectors about the origin of the Lynchburg CD 160 Type II. Some suggest that the Type II was a new mold manufactured in the Lynchburg shops. As Lynchburg advertised, they had the capability of making insulator molds (see Lynchburg Advertising Brochure), so it is entirely possible that they manufactured new molds for the CD 160.

However, a close comparison of Lynchburg CD 160 Type I and Type II molds with the same mold number reveals identical lettering on the two types, even to irregularities in the shape of letters (see comparison below). This provides rather conclusive evidence that the CD 160 Type II molds are reworked Type I molds to widen the crown and thereby provide a deeper wire groove. That reworking also yields a profile very similar to Hemingray's CD160 No. 14, Lynchburg's primary competitor (see below; note that the Gayner product number for this style was No. 140).

Lynchburg CD 160 Type ILynchburg CD 160 Type IIHemingray CD 160
Comparison of two variations of Lynchburg CD 160, Mold 5: reworked Gayner mold (left, Type I, Mold 5);
modified Lynchburg mold center, Type II, Mold 5). At right is a Hemingray CD 160 No. 14.

There were 23,358 CD 160 produced in three production runs: between October 29 and December 29, 1923; the week ending April 5, 1924; between February 9 and 21, 1925. Even though Type II is a later modification, it is not known if and to what extent production of the two types overlapped.

All lettering on the molds is hand engraved, with the exception of a few mold numbers that are die stamped. Lettering is fairly even and consistent on all molds, differing only in placement on the skirt and slight variances in size.

There are 7 confirmed molds of Type I and one other reported (Mold 1) but not personally confirmed. There may be more. There are 11 confirmed molds of Type II, with one mold retooled twice. There may be 12 molds total, although it is possible that only 11 molds were used. All Type I molds share mold numbers with Type II. This style does not occur with smooth base.

Numbers in parenthesis have been reported but I have not personally confirmed them; other numbers in gray are assumed but have not been reported or confirmed.

(I, Mold 1) I, Mold 2 I, Mold 3 I, Mold 4 I, Mold 5 I, Mold 6
II, Mold 1 II, Mold 2 II, Mold 3 II, Mold 4 II, Mold 5 II, Mold 6
I, Mold 7 ? ? I, Mold 10 ? -
II, Mold 7 II, Mold 8 II, Mold 9 II, Mold 10
II, Mold 10.1
II, Mold 10.2
II, Mold 11 II, Mold 12

Additional Information

For detailed information on various manufacturers of the CD 160 style see Andrew Gibson's Baby Signals 1899 to 1957 (an Adobe .pdf file; external link).

For further information on this CD style see Andrew Gibson's Baby Signals 1899 to 1957 (.pdf format, external link)